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Campus News
Your faculty and staff news since 1965
Current Issue: October 14, 2002
Volume 38, Number 7

Brinker receives DOE's most prestigious award

C. Jeff Brinker, professor of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering and Chemistry at UNM, has been named one of seven recipients of the E.O. Lawrence Award, U.S. Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham recently announced.

The awards will be presented at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. on Monday, Oct. 28. Each recipient will receive a gold medal, a citation and $25,000.

The award is given for outstanding contributions in the field of atomic energy, which today influences many fields of science such as environmental research, materials science and nuclear medicine that were in their infancy when the first Lawrence Award was given.

The Lawrence Award was established in 1959 to honor the memory of the late Dr. Ernest Orlando Lawrence who invented the cyclotron (a particle accelerator) and after whom two major Energy Department laboratories in Berkeley and Livermore, Calif., are named. The award is given in seven categories for outstanding contributions in the field of atomic energy, broadly defined.

Brinker will receive the award in the Materials Research category for his innovations in sol-gel chemistry to create nanostructured materials that have applications to energy, manufacturing, defense and medicine.

Brinker is also the co-director of the Center for Micro-Engineered Materials at UNM and a senior scientist at Sandia National Laboratories. He recently was elected into the National Academy of Engineering (NAE). Election to NAE is one of the highest professional distinctions that can be accorded to an engineer.

“I’m of course extremely honored to be the recipient of the E.O. Lawrence Award. This award recognizes rather recent research accomplishments —as opposed to being a lifetime achievement award,” Brinker said.

“I’d like to give credit to the fantastic students and post-docs who have worked with me over the past several years on topics like aerogels and self-assembled porous and composite nanostructures,” he said. “I’d also like to acknowledge the collaboration between the Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering, the Center for Micro-Engineered Materials, Sandia, and the Advanced Materials Lab, which has created a fertile, provocative research environment needed to foster creative interdisciplinary materials research.”

Other recipients are from the Institute for Genomic Research, Rockville, MD; Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, Calif.; Stanford University and the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC), Stanford, Calif.; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, Calif.; North Carolina State University, Raleigh.

“We are all enriched by the contributions these researchers have made ranging from understanding the genetic code to measuring the expansion of the universe itself,” Abraham said.